27 Facts About Colorado

Facts About Colorado

Quick Facts

  • Capital: Denver
  • Population: 5.9 million (2021)
  • Statehood: August 1, 1876
  • Nickname: Centennial State
  • Highest point: Mount Elbert at 14,440 feet

Welcome to the breathtaking state of Colorado! With its soaring mountains, vast plains, and deep canyons, Colorado is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.

Known as the Centennial State, it has a rich history and a vibrant culture that attracts millions of visitors each year.

Facts About Colorado

  1. Colorado is known as the Centennial State because it joined the Union in 1876, 100 years after the United States declared its independence.
  2. The name “Colorado” means “colored red” in Spanish, referring to the reddish sediment carried by the Colorado River.
  3. Colorado boasts the highest average elevation of any U.S. state at 6,800 feet above sea level.
  4. The world’s largest natural hot springs pool is located in Glenwood Springs, Colorado. The Glenwood Hot Springs have been drawing visitors since 1888.
  5. The U.S. Air Force Academy is in Colorado Springs. This prestigious institution has produced numerous leaders and astronauts.
  6. Colorado is home to four national parks: Rocky Mountain, Mesa Verde, Great Sand Dunes, and Black Canyon of the Gunnison.
  7. Denver, the state capital, is nicknamed the “Mile High City” because it sits exactly 5,280 feet (one mile) above sea level.
  8. The Colorado State Capitol building in Denver is unique because it has a dome plated with 24-karat gold leaf.
  9. The highest paved road in North America is the Mount Evans Scenic Byway, which climbs to an elevation of 14,130 feet.
  10. The world’s first rodeo took place in Deer Trail, Colorado, on July 4, 1869.
  11. Colorado has 58 mountain peaks above 14,000 feet, known as “fourteeners.” Mountaineers from around the world come to climb these peaks.
  12. The famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre near Morrison, Colorado, is an open-air venue made entirely of natural rock formations. It’s known for its incredible acoustics and has hosted numerous legendary concerts.
  13. The world’s deepest geothermal hot spring is in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. The Great Pagosa Hot Springs has a depth of over 1,000 feet.
  14. Colorado has the highest suspension bridge in the United States. The Royal Gorge Bridge near Cañon City stands 955 feet above the Arkansas River.
  15. The Cripple Creek and Victor gold mine is one of the largest gold mines in the United States, producing over 250,000 ounces of gold annually.
  16. The Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is a historic steam-powered train that takes passengers on a scenic journey through the San Juan Mountains.
  17. The United States Olympic & Paralympic Training Center is located in Colorado Springs, providing training facilities for athletes from various sports.
  18. The world’s largest flat-top mountain, Grand Mesa, is in western Colorado, covering an area of about 500 square miles.
  19. Katherine Lee Bates was inspired to write the lyrics for “America the Beautiful” after seeing the view from the summit of Pikes Peak, a 14,115-foot mountain in Colorado.
  20. The U.S. Mint in Denver produces coins for circulation and commemorative coins. Established in 1906, it is responsible for producing billions of coins each year.
  21. Colorado is the only state to turn down the opportunity to host the Winter Olympics. In 1972, voters rejected the plan due to concerns about the potential environmental and financial impacts.
  22. The Dinosaur National Monument in northwestern Colorado contains one of the world’s richest deposits of dinosaur fossils, including the famous Stegosaurus and Allosaurus.
  23. The Colorado potato beetle is a notorious pest that damages potato crops. Despite its name, it is not native to Colorado but was introduced from Mexico.
  24. The Maroon Bells, two peaks in the Elk Mountains, are the most photographed mountains in North America due to their striking beauty.
  25. Colorado has the highest percentage of craft breweries per capita in the United States, with over 400 breweries statewide.
  26. The Garden of the Gods, a public park in Colorado Springs, features stunning red sandstone rock formations that are millions of years old.
  27. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado, is the United States’ primary research facility for renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies.


From the majestic peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the ancient cliff dwellings of Mesa Verde, Colorado truly offers something for everyone.

The Centennial State is a land of contrasts, where nature’s beauty intertwines with human ingenuity, creating a landscape that captivates the hearts of all who visit.

As we’ve seen through these 27 fascinating facts, Colorado’s rich history, diverse culture, and stunning natural wonders make it a must-see destination for travelers and adventure seekers alike.

So whether you’re planning a trip to Colorado or simply curious about this extraordinary state, we hope you’ve enjoyed this journey through the colorful tapestry of Colorado’s past and present.

Colorado FAQ

What is Colorado famous for?

Colorado is famous for its stunning mountain landscapes, including the Rocky Mountains, numerous outdoor recreational opportunities, and its thriving craft beer scene.

What is the climate like in Colorado?

Colorado has a varied climate, with cold winters and mild to warm summers.

The state is known for its abundant sunshine, with some areas receiving over 300 days of sunshine per year.

What are the most popular outdoor activities in Colorado?

Popular outdoor activities in Colorado include skiing, snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, fishing, rafting, and rock climbing.

How did the Colorado Gold Rush impact the state?

The Colorado Gold Rush, which began in 1859, brought thousands of prospectors to the region, leading to the establishment of many towns and the rapid growth of the territory.

The gold rush laid the foundation for Colorado’s future mining industry.

Are there any famous Colorado-based companies?

Some famous Colorado-based companies include Coors Brewing Company, OtterBox, and Ball Corporation.

What is the state animal of Colorado?

The state animal of Colorado is the Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep, which can be found in the rugged mountainous regions of the state.

What are some popular foods in Colorado?

Some popular foods in Colorado include green chile, bison, Rocky Mountain oysters, and Palisade peaches.

Colorado is also known for its unique take on Mexican cuisine, often referred to as “Colorado-style” Mexican food.

Are there any UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Colorado?

Yes, Colorado has one UNESCO World Heritage Site: Mesa Verde National Park, which preserves the ancient cliff dwellings of the Ancestral Puebloan people.

How many national parks are in Colorado?

There are four national parks in Colorado: Rocky Mountain National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, Great Sand Dunes National Park, and Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

What is the Colorado state flower?

The state flower of Colorado is the blue columbine, a beautiful wildflower native to the Rocky Mountains.

Why is the Colorado River so important?

The Colorado River is vital because it provides water to millions of people in seven U.S. states and Mexico.

It also supports agriculture, hydroelectric power generation, and diverse ecosystems.

Is marijuana legal in Colorado?

Yes, marijuana is legal in Colorado for both medical and recreational use. The state was one of the first in the U.S. to legalize recreational marijuana in 2012.

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